Planning and General Information
Design of new premises
Contact your local council if you are building new premises or planning modifications. You may need to submit a development application. It is crucial throughout the design and application stages that you consider your environmental responsibilities and get it right first time.
A bund is a simple and effective device or system for minimising the risk of liquid escaping to the environment. A bund generally consists of a low wall or hump built to contain spills and leaks from fixed tanks and containers such as 200 L (44 gallon) drums. For detailed information on bunding refer to the Australian Standard AS 1940-2004: The Storage and Handling of Flammable and Combustible Liquids available from Standards Australia and the DECC publication Bunding and Spill Management.
Environmental management systems, policies and plans
An environmental management system can include an environmental management program or plan for your business; a written environmental policy; a regular environmental review process; and a demonstrated commitment by management and staff to meet and maintain the standards set out in your plan.
An environmental policy should express a company's commitment to compliance with environmental laws and environmental best practice. The policy forms the basis on which the organisation sets its objectives and targets for continual improvement. It should outline how you manage environmental issues such as resource consumption, water quality and waste minimisation.
Involve staff in developing an environmental management policy and plan for your business. If they've contributed to it, they're more likely to follow it. If your business is part of a larger company find out the policies, plans and practices the company uses to help you improve your environmental performance.
An environmental management plan is an extension of your policy and includes actions already taken, and time frames for actions planned for the future. The plan is constantly reviewed and revised. It may include a maintenance plan or daily schedule for employees to follow. Activities in this schedule might include cleaning and maintaining equipment and surfaces, and regular checks that no wastes are entering stormwater drains from solid waste receptacles. Remember an environment management plan is a dynamic document and must be reviewed, assessed, tested and modified regularly.
- When you've developed your environmental policy and plan, display it for your customers and suppliers to see.
Train your staff in the environmental aspects of their work. Show them and make sure they understand:
- the practices you have in place to reduce your impact on the environment
- where the stormwater drains are and why you support keeping litter and waste out of the drains
- how to correctly handle materials to reduce waste and prevent spills
- how and where to place separated wastes, such as cardboard, liquid wastes and product containers
- what they need to do.
Our Environmental Management Plan
(This example may provide some ideas for you to use in preparing your own plan)
Our environmental commitment and policy
This business cares about the environment, and we ask our staff and customers to do the same. We will do our best to continually improve our environmental performance and make sure that our activities do not harm the water, air or ground.
- At least twice a year we will use an environmental checklist to work out where we can make some environmental improvements.
- Each day we will check all the stormwater drains on our premises and remove litter or waste that may enter the stormwater system.
- At the end of each day we will clean and tidy up the inside and outside work areas in a way that causes no or minimal impact on the environment.
- On a regular basis we will investigate new product lines that may be less environmentally damaging and if possible introduce these into our operations.
- Twice a year we will check out opportunities for minimising, reusing or recycling some of the wastes that are currently going out of our business.
- We will keep ourselves informed of the latest equipment and pollution control techniques and processes available to industry.
- We will be pro-active in assessing our existing equipment and operational techniques and develop plans and set goals to improve our environmental performance
- Your local council
- WorkCover NSW, Tel: 131 050
- Standards Australia, Tel: (02) 8206 6000
- DECC Environment Line, Tel: 131 555
Page last updated: 27 February 2011